don’t let boys define you ★ on the fence by kasie west

onthefence_kasiewestPublished: July 1st 2014 by HarperTeen
Genre & Keywords: Contemporary
Other Books From AuthorPivot Point duology, The Distance Between Us

Amazon | Goodreads | @kasiewest |

She’s a tomboy. He’s the boy next door.

Charlie spent almost all her life with 1 dad, 3 older brothers, and a boy next door, which explains why she’s probably the toughest contemporary female MC. She plays football on the guy’s team, outruns any of her brothers, tackles the stupid things brothers do, hasn’t worn a single make up in her life, and doesn’t give a crap about what others think of her. So you can imagine the shock she went into when she had to work as a model at a chichi boutique to pay off her speeding ticket!

When things get too tough, Charlie finds herself wandering at midnight to the fence separating her house from Braden’s, who had been together with her family for so long that he was almost like a brother… almost.


I knew I loved Kasie West’s The Distance Between Us, but how many authors have continually impressed you? Not many. So I had doubts before reading On The Fence… and here we are! SO. MUCH. ADORABLENESS. Here is a book that made me happy like how the sunrise makes one fill to the brim with hope and joy. THIS. Is perfect proof why you don’t need tons of drama to write an amazing book. On The Fence is kind of a finding-yourself contemporary, it doesn’t have thrilling dips and turns, only gentle steps that tread on the fuzzy feels in your heart.

And can we please take a moment to talk about how jealous I am of girls with boys next door? This best friend romance. So perfect. Braden and Charlie know each other so well and they have the best dynamics. There was no way it wouldn’t happen! They would banter and tease and be serious when they needed to, and it all felt so natural. I love it when Braden would automatically step in as a “brother” to protect Charlie even when he isn’t part of the family.

Charlie isn’t the most relatable character. That would have bothered me in any other book, but not so much for Charlie. She can be fierce and determined on the football field but when it comes to femininity, that girl knows zero, zilch, nada. At first, I didn’t know if I buy her “I have no idea what girls do” character because it’s not like her whole life is revolved around her family, doesn’t she go to school and see how girls be girls? Then as the story progresses and Charlie struggles to define herself, I slowly accepted her, and appreciated her strength in finding meaning in being decidedly different from other girls.

I know many readers gave multiple hearts for Charlie’s family dynamics. While I liked her family, they weren’t memorable. The brothers are a great ensemble that work superbly together, their homely atmosphere is infectious, but I hoped for a bit more backstory on top of that. They are fun and cute like every other happy family, but not outstanding as individuals because to me, they felt like faceless characters only known for being “Charlie’s Brother”. Charlie had THREE brothers, that’s a lot of side characters to flesh out in 320 pages, so I understand how difficult it is to characterise each of them. Just thought it could’ve been better!

Have you read this one??  Heard of it?  If you’ve read it, did you enjoy it? I would LOVE to hear regardless! If you haven’t read it, is it something on your radar or that you think you will read this summer?


17 thoughts on “don’t let boys define you ★ on the fence by kasie west

  1. I LOVE your review! I haven’t had the chance yet to read the book but I loved The Distance Between Us which is why I can’t wait to get my own copy of On The Fence. Your review really makes me regret I haven’t read it yet :D

  2. Great review, I have just read this book as well and I totally agree, it was adorable and I loved everything about it! The best friend romance was perfect, and I liked how Charlie was finding herself all the way through it.

    • The thing I love most about Kasie West’s contemporaries is that they are cute, but they still have some depth to them that doesn’t feel forced/overwhelming. Everything flows naturally and all you need to do is to make yourself comfortable for the ride down ADORABLE LANE. :)) So glad you enjoyed reading it too!

    • Oh yes!! I live in Singapore where we’re perpetually scorched by the sun so lazy summer afternoons happen almost everyday. Which is why I think I’m the best testament when it comes to cutesy fluffy books because I need so much of them in my life <3 Haha hope you'll enjoy reading this!

    • I love the best friend romance so much <3 Even though we all know Charlie and Braden are definitely going to get together, watching how they slowly get closer (and snarkier) still made me so happy. *sigh* Reading fiction books… and fantasizing all the cute relationships I don't have is the summary of my life.

  3. I literally just finished this book two days ago and loved it so hard! It was adorable and funny and had me laughing the whole way through! I loved the best friend romance and just Charlie as a whole. Ahh I’m swooning just thinking about this book!

    • HAHAHA so glad you enjoyed it! Charlie isn’t someone I love straightaway but her unique character grew on me and I’d love to get to know her in real life :)) I could learn so much from her, maybe we could start off with lessons on how to stay fit and run X number of miles everyday omg. That girl is so buff (Y) If you haven’t read The Distance Between Us… READ THAT ONE TOO!! :))

  4. Everything from the cover to the title to the gifs scream CUTENESS!!! Been hearing a lot about Kasie West but never actually read her books. I’d love to start off with this one, sounds like the perfect summer read to fly by in a nice, warm afternoon!

    Great review!

  5. I’ve heard nothing but FABULOUS things about this! :D It sounds so cute and fluffy, and I’m definitely going to give it a try! I feel like the only one who hasn’t read a Kasie West book, but THAT WILL CHANGE! ;) Best friend romances are always some of my favorites, so I’m interested in seeing how that aspect plays out! It’s a shame that the family dynamics seemed a bit underdeveloped for you, but besides that everything else sounds WONDERFUL! Thanks for sharing Alicia, and, as always, BRILLIANT review! <3

    • Thank you, Zoe! You are the most kind with your compliments :)) I’ve read all of Kasie West’s YA books (couldn’t bear to continue the Pivot Point series though), and her contemporaries always make me wish for more!!! Even with the underwhelming family dynamics, On The Fence made me burst into sudden giggles for days after reading! Hope you enjoy AHH the fluffiness is <3

  6. I read this book just yesterday, and I really loved it.It wasn’t as amazing as The Distance Between Us-well nobody can compete with Caymen-but still I enjoyed the sweet love story.
    I love when friends fall in love in books.Those type of romances are really adorable to read, as we can clearly see how their feelings change from friendship to something more.

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